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Recommendations, tricks and tips for Economy rent a car

Discover our advice on where to find the most suitable and economy rental car for your trip.

If you want to travel at your own pace and discover a destination at your own pace, the best way to do it is to choose to rent a cheap car.

The Economy rent a car industry is increasingly developed and you can now get a vehicle for a few days almost anywhere in the world. In my case, I have done it, for example, in France, Spain, Morocco, Ireland, but also in countries as far away as Australia and New Zealand, places where the spectacular natural beauty makes you want to stop at every corner, thus nullifying the functionality of public transport.

However, with so many economy rent a car offers, the task of choosing the right travel companion becomes a case of in-depth study. After years doing it for my trips, I leave you a complete guide to help you in this arduous task.

Basically we can differentiate them into three groups:

Large international companies: the large car rental companies have fleets that cover almost all types of models and offices all over the world. Their years on the market, large infrastructures and the ability to serve customers in a large number of languages are the added assets that make them chosen by many customers. Among them we can highlight Hertz, Avis, Sixt and Europcar.

Low-cost companies: they usually launch great offers for economy rent a car, but their benefits and services are also lower. Some of them, however, are also large empires that bill large amounts annually and have fleets of cars of considerable size.

Local companies: in the face of so much competition, these companies have something more difficult to gain customers, but some manage to survive with dignity. They are more used by those who already know the area or are waiting to rent at the last minute.

When to rent the car

As is often the case with so many other aspects of travel: the sooner we start comparing car rental prices, benefits and more, the better deals we’ll get. This is particularly true when we are trying to rent a car in places of great tourist fame. If you wait until the last days, or to do it when you are already at the destination, the price you will have to pay can be up to 50% higher than what you could have obtained if you had acted with some foresight.
It is also advisable not to make reservations in high season, when the prices of rental cars tend to skyrocket by more than considerable percentages.

Although there is still a minority of customers who opt for telephone reservations, the most common method is still the Internet. There is also the possibility of walking into a physical office at the airport and making the reservation directly, but it is a practice that is languishing towards its extinction.

Today we can find a multitude of car rental offer comparators on the web that will be the most used by travelers. Here the information from various companies of all kinds is brought together and allows the traveler to weigh and choose based on the variables that interest them most.

Among those that we have been testing over time, we opted for Economy.Rentals. It is currently the largest on the market, enjoys a good reputation and offers the possibility of renting in almost any destination on the planet by collaborating with more than 1000 car rental companies (large, small and local).

The thing is not as easy as simply comparing the prices of different companies. There are many more benefits that we must take into account and, in addition, the prices obtained on the internet are not always the ones that we will end up paying when we are signing the contract at the rental company’s counter.

The issue of insurance when renting a car is a whole world.

The price offered by the company on the Internet usually includes only basic insurance that leaves many things out of its coverage. To cover any other type of contingency, they will immobilize an amount for the franchise on your credit card. They are usually high amounts that can easily reach 1,000 euros.

To avoid these deductibles, you can contract additional insurance (which can considerably increase the rental price of the car) or eliminate them with a daily payment with which the companies that sell the car rental agree to take care of them in case of for an incident to occur.

In any of these cases, do not forget to carefully read the conditions of the different contracts. You know the classic saying: “insurers never lose”.

In the past, all economy rent a car companies had the same fuel policy: they delivered your rental car with a full tank of gasoline and you had to return it in the same way. If you did it like that, they didn’t charge you anything at all.

Today there are many that use the prepaid technique. When renting the car you must pay an amount for the gasoline that is in the tank. Supposedly, when you return it, if you have not consumed the entire deposit, you will be returned the amount of money equivalent to the unused gasoline. This practice is abusive, since the price you prepay for the deposit does not correspond to the price of the fuel on the market.

I recommend that you only deal with car rental companies that opt for the old full-full policy. Of course, if you have to return your rental car before taking a flight, carefully calculate the time you need to fill the tank, the vehicle inspection by the operators of the rental company and the transfer to the airport (several offices are some distance from it). If you didn’t have time to put gas in it, they’ll charge you what’s left at stratospheric prices.

Pick-up and drop-off locations for your rental car

Most rental car offices are located at airports but more and more are opening them in central areas of cities or near train and bus stations.
Play around with the different locations in the same city and you might be able to get a better deal on your rental car. Sometimes there is a significant surcharge on some of them, making the final price substantially more expensive.

If you are going to pick up the car at one office and return it to a different one, find out about the costs of doing so. You almost always have to pay an extra, although in Australia and New Zealand I found car and motorhome rental companies where they even left you the vehicle for free as long as you took it from one point to another. You actually do the work of a carrier and get paid in kind.


Do not wait until the last moment to book your rental car. Through Economy.Rentals you will find the best price on the market and free cancellation service.

When choosing between the different rental car offers you must be clear about what you are looking for.

The cheapest models are always the smallest but perhaps that is enough if you are traveling as a couple and with little luggage. If you go in a group or with your family, you will have to pay a little more and get a slightly larger vehicle. The big car rental companies also have high-end vehicles, sports cars, etc.

If you are not very clear about your preferences, perhaps it is best to use price comparators and models from the different companies available.

Extras in car rental

Another thing to take into account when renting a car is the choice of extras: baby seats, DVDs, roof rack to carry sports equipment or more cargo, GPS, etc.
The extras are usually charged at a somewhat high price, so I recommend that you use only the essentials
GPS is no longer essential with current technology, which incorporates it into all mobile phones and tablets.
An extra service that can be useful is the registration of a second driver. It usually comes in handy when we are going to make a long trip, both drivers being able to take turns to be able to hmake it less tiring.
How to pay for car rental

The payment method accepted by all car rental companies is the credit card. You will not be able to pay with a debit card since the credit card remains as a guarantee to cover the case in which something happens to the vehicle.

Some companies offer discounts on the rental price of the car if payment is made at the time of booking.

However, the most common is that the credit card is not charged until the day you pick up the vehicle. I recommend that you choose this option, since they usually allow the cancellation of the reservation, without charge, up to 48 hours before the car rental date.

Other appreciations in economy rent a car

Here is a list of other considerations to take into account:

Many of the economy rent a car companies usually apply surcharges in the event that the driver is less than 25 years old.
You have to take into account the issue of mileage. Although it is usual for it to be unlimited, there are also many cases in which it is not.
When crossing country borders with your rental car, we must also consult the company.
You have to pay the fines. Do not think that because it is not your car, you should not pay the fines that you get. The rental company will charge it to your credit card.

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